For the second straight year, the Raiders are one of the betting favorites to acquire a three-time NFL MVP quarterback.
A year after Las Vegas was one of the early favorites to land Tom Brady before he signed with Tampa Bay, the Raiders are the 5-1 third choice at DraftKings sportsbook to be Aaron Rodgers’ 2021 team.
Rodgers, the reigning league MVP, reportedly wants out of Green Bay and would prefer to play for the 49ers, Raiders or Broncos.
The Packers opened as the -125 favorites Monday to keep their QB and Denver was the 2-1 second choice at DraftKings, which doesn’t have a book in Nevada.
“Las Vegas is a good spot to go to for Rodgers. He’s been playing in cold weather his whole career, so to get a chance to play in a place like Las Vegas might suit him well,” DraftKings sportsbook director Johnny Avello said. “But the Raiders re-signed their backup (Marcus) Mariota. It would kind of be unlikely. I think it’s either he’s staying in Green Bay or going to Denver.”
DraftKings raised the Broncos’ season win total from 7½ to 9. William Hill took the win totals and division odds for Denver and Green Bay off the board.
Super Bowl shuffle
Circa slashed the Broncos’ Super Bowl odds from 75-1 to 20-1 on Thursday before bumping them up to 25-1. Denver didn’t use its first-round draft pick on a QB, as many had projected.
“They’re not going to put all of their faith in Teddy Bridgewater and not make an effort to get Aaron Rodgers,” Circa sportsbook manager Chris Bennett said. “It makes perfect sense to do whatever it takes to get him. They have some guys coming back from injuries, their defense could be very good and they’ve got some receivers and tight end options that Rodgers would want to play with.”
The Raiders’ Super Bowl odds dipped from 50-1 to 20-1 at Circa before soaring back to 40-1.
“We haven’t really taken any significant action recently on the Raiders,” Bennett said. “The initial move was conservative off the possibility that Rodgers could be going there. But we backed off a little bit because it doesn’t seem like anything is imminent.
“I thought it was strange for Rodgers to want to go a Raiders team that has quite a few issues. Given his age, I figured he’d want to go somewhere that has a good defense and is ready to contend. He probably could make the Raiders a contender but they’ve got holes on defense and the offensive line and they’re in a tough division.”
At the Westgate, the Chiefs are -250 favorites to win the AFC West, followed by the Chargers (+450), Broncos (7-1) and Raiders (14-1).
The Niners’ Super Bowl odds changed from 15-1 to 8-1 at Circa before climbing back to 15-1 after the team drafted QB Trey Lance with the No. 3 pick.
Circa has raised the Packers from +975 to 18-1.
“We’re in a decent position with the Packers right now. If someone wants to take a shot thinking he’ll be back, we’re comfortable with this number,” Bennett said. “If he holds out or gets traded, the Packers will be higher than 18-1. There’s also the possibility that (backup QB) Jordan Love is really good. Even with Love, they might be the best team in the NFC North.
“If they don’t have Rodgers this season, that doesn’t mean the Packers will be a disaster.”
At the Westgate, the Packers are -180 favorites to win the NFC North, followed by the Vikings (+375), Bears (4-1) and Lions (28-1).
Bennett said he’d make Rodgers a slight favorite to not be playing for the Packers in Week 1.
“What you’re pricing is the front office’s willingness to trade him,” he said. “I could envision him getting traded and I could also envision him sitting out entirely.
“It seems more likely than not that he’s not playing for the Packers.”